New Fuel Minimums –


President Barack Obama announced on Friday the next phase in his administration’s program is to increase fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gas pollution for all new cars and trucks sold in the United States. These new standards will cover cars and light trucks for model years 2017-2025, requiring performance equivalent to 54.5mpg in 2025 while reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 163 grams per mile. The proposal is a result of extensive negotiations between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and will result in one national standard for regulating future greenhouse gas emissions and fuel economy.

The Obama administration claimed that, taken together, the standards it has established spanning model years 2011 to 2025 will save consumers an estimated $1.7 trillion dollars in real fuel costs over the life of their vehicles.

General Motors issued a statement saying it agreed “in principle” with the new standards, while BMW and Toyota fully endorsed them.

“I am pleased to be in Washington today to demonstrate Toyota’s unyielding commitment to this important process,” said James Lentz, president & COO, Toyota Motor Sales, USA. “The long-term objectives of this program are very ambitious, and we intend to meet the challenge.

“We share the Administration’s goal of achieving major advances in clean, fuel efficient vehicles.  Obviously, there is still a great deal of uncertainty as to how the market will respond and what vehicle technologies consumers will embrace, which is why we are rolling out and testing a range of alternative fuel options,” Lentz added “As the rule-making process moves forward, we look forward to working closely and constructively with the Administration and other stakeholders to ensure that we realize our shared environmental goals in the most economically effective and consumer-friendly ways possible.”

Josef Kerscher, president, BMW Manufacturing, added: “Regulatory consistency is critical to synchronize product development with government rules. This way, companies have the time necessary to develop technologies that fulfill the requirements while remaining profitable and sustainable.  The path from 2017 to 2021 is now clearly marked and we are ready for the challenge.”

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